FCA prepare for trip to Mönchengladbach
The international break is over and it’s back to Bundesliga action for FC Augsburg! On Saturday afternoon (15:30 CET), FCA will face off against Borussia Mönchengladbach. Head coach Heiko Herrlich will be looking forward to a reunion with the club where his career once began, while goalkeeper Rafał Gikiewicz is hoping his side can pull off another upset like they did against Dortmund earlier this season.
The team were able to draw lessons from their 3-0 defeat to Hertha BSC on matchday 7. “We know what we need to do better, in comparison to the game against Hertha,” said Rafał Gikiewicz. “We’ve trained well over the last two weeks and played well in the friendly against Karlsruher.”
Unlike the friendly against second-division KSC (4-1 win), Augsburg will be coming up against a top-quality side in Gladbach this weekend. Despite the Foals (11) having just one point more than FCA (10), they’ve managed to deliver a strong showing in the Champions League this season against Inter Milan (2-2), Real Madrid (2-2) and Shakhtar Donetsk (6-0). “Gladbach play extremely well and are able to do a lot on the ball,” said Heiko Herrlich. “We’re up against a strong side this weekend.”
The trip to Mönchengladbach will also be a familiar one for Herrlich. He experienced his breakthrough as a player with the Foals, winning the DFB-Pokal with them in 1995. He also finished that season as the top goalscorer in the Bundesliga. But, Herrlich will not be dwelling on the past this weekend. “We will try to cause them problems for as long as possible,” he said.
The 48-year-old will be able to call upon left-back Iago again, after he missed out on the friendly against KSC. Right-back Raphael Framberger returned to team training on Thursday and could be an option for the weekend, after having missed the last game with a thigh injury.
According to Herrlich, the key for the team will be about finding the right balance between staying focused on defence and impressing on offence. “It will come down to remaining compact and solid, while also creating chances,” he said. “We will need to be courageous, focused and precise - we will certainly have our chances.”
Staying focused will also be the key to success on Saturday for Gikiewicz. “We made too many mistakes in the last few games. We need to be more focused right from the start,” said the 33-year-old. “Gladbach are a strong side, but as we showed against Dortmund, if we leave everything on the pitch then we’re able to beat anyone,” he said, adding “We’re heading to Gladbach with confidence.”